Your body will need adequate hours of sleep to prepare for the next day. However, you might have trouble doing so if bed bugs are disturbing you.
Bed bugs are stealth experts, avid travellers, resilient survivors, and prolific breeders (with healthy a female producing up to 500 offsprings in her lifetime). All these combined give bed bugs the ability to take over every resting space in a residence fast. Their bites can leave red and itchy welts all over your body, causing sleep disruption and making them a veritable nuisance.
Fortunately, you can remove them once by following these steps:
- Locate the Infested Areas
Locate them before they begin to multiply. Do it early since it's cheaper and easier to treat a small infestation. Still, small infestations may be harder to detect.
You can either search for them yourself or hire pest removal services to conduct an inspection. Some inspectors even have trained dogs that can detect bed bugs by scent.
These insects have small and narrow bodies, so it's easy for them to hide in tiny spots like the folds of curtains and the seams of your couch. Use a magnifying glass and a flashlight to look for them in these places:
- between couch cushions
- in baseboards
- in cracks in the bed frame and headboard
- in furniture joints
- inside electrical outlets
- in the line where the wallpaper and ceiling meet
- near the tags of the box spring and mattress
- under loose wallpaper
- underneath paintings and posters on the walls
Catch bed bugs with these signs:
- live bed bugs, which are about ¼ of an inch long and are reddish
- bedbug droppings, which are dark spots about the size of a period
- eggshells, small and pale yellow eggs, and yellowish skins that young bed bugs shed
- reddish stains on your mattress
When you find one, store it in a sealed jar with a teaspoon of rubbing alcohol.
- Control the Bedbug Invasion
Contain bed bugs so you can stop their infestation. An easy way to do so is by running your vacuum over several possible hiding places.
Run it over the following:
Seal the contents into a plastic bag and dispose of them right away. Then, clean out the vacuum thoroughly. Make sure to secure all your contaminated clothes and linens in plastic bags until you can wash them. Put them on the highest possible temperature setting for both the washer and dryer. If you can't rinse an item, place it in the dryer at the highest heat setting for 30 minutes.
Place anything that you can't put in the washer or dryer in a plastic bag and leave it for a few months to ensure all bed bugs die. Discard furniture that you can't clean.
- Prepare Your Home for Treatment
To increase the success of removing these insects, prepare your home for treatment. Check and see that your carpets, clothing, drapes, linen, and other hiding places have been cleaned or thrown out.
Remove anything that bed bugs might use as their hiding places. Pick up books, clothes, magazines, and other things on your floor and under your bed. Dispose of whatever you can. Prevent further infestation by avoiding moving items from a contaminated room to a clean one.
Enclose any open areas and glue any loose wallpaper. Make sure to caulk any cracks in your furniture and around baseboards. Close electrical outlets and move your bed at least 6 inches away from the wall to prevent bed bugs from climbing on it.
You can remove bed bugs using high heat (46°C) or intense cold (0°C and below). Here's how:
- Wash clothes and bedding in hot water for 30 minutes. Place in a dryer for 30 minutes on the highest heat setting.
- Use a steamer on couches, mattresses, and other hiding spots.
- Place infested items in black bags and put them in a closed car or outside on a hot day. It may take 2 to 5 months to kill sealed-up bugs in cooler temperatures.
- Leave bags containing bugs in the freezer at -17°C. Leave them for at least 4 days and check the temperature with a thermometer.
If the previous methods don't kill all bed bugs, you might need to use insecticides.
- Desiccants - These are insecticides that can destroy the bed bugs' protective outer coating. Though they can't become resistant to these products, they can take a few months to kill them all.
- Foggers or bug bombs - While they're effective, they can't reach into crack and crevices where they hide. Also, they can be toxic to humans if you use them incorrectly. Use these with caution and leave the area before using.
- Pyrethrins and pyrethroids - These are the most common insecticides for bed bugs. Unfortunately, some bugs have become immune to them.
- Pyrroles - These insecticides kill bed bugs by disrupting their cells.
- Neonicotinoids - These are artificial versions of nicotine, which can damage the bed bugs' nervous system. It works on bugs that have become unaffected by other pesticides.
- Plant oil-based products - These are less toxic compare to chemical insecticides and work well against bed bugs.
- Observe the Target Areas
It can take some time to remove bed bugs. Observe the infested areas weekly for any signs of activity. You can also place bedbug interceptors under each leg of the affected beds and bed frames. These will trap any surviving bed bugs before they can reach your bed. Check on them for a year.
- Reapply Treatment as Needed
Since bed bugs are hardy creatures, you might spot them again. You might have to try different treatments to get rid of them. If those methods still don't work, contact the exterminators.
Protect your home and mattress Burlington Ontario homeowners can turn to the nearest pest control company to get rid of bed bugs for assistance. Pest control companies use the latest methods and products to kill bugs on sight while preventing further infestation. They can also use special equipment that can heat a room high enough to wipe them out.
Before they arrive, they should direct you on how to best prep your home. Make sure to follow their instructions carefully.
Professional treatments usually take 2 to 3 days to start taking effect. After every treatment, stay out of the treated rooms for a few hours until the insecticides have dried.
Preserve your right to sleep. Get rid of bed bugs as soon as signs of them begin to appear.